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How to Escape Lifetime Security and Pursue Your Impossible Dream: A Guide to Transforming Your Career Paperback – October 1, 2004

4.6 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


“Having successfully gone through the type of career transition described in this book, I can appreciate not only its masterful detailing of the process but also its thoughtful, thought-provoking challenge to all those thinking of undergoing their own transitions.”
(Ira Wohl, Academy Award–winning director turned psychotherapist) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Kenneth Atchity is a writer, producer, literary manager, and former professor of comparative literature. He currently lives in Los Angeles.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Allworth Press; 1 edition (October 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1581153856
  • ISBN-13: 978-1581153859
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 5.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,288,170 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

"I believe we can change the world through stories. 'The universe,' says Muriel Rukeyser, 'is not made of atoms, but of stories.' I believe in making a difference in the lives of others through the power of storytelling, both as a story teller myself and as a "story merchant" who enables other storytellers to make a difference."

Dr. Ken Atchity loves being a writer, producer, teacher, career coach, and literary manager, responsible for launching hundreds of books and films. His life's passion is finding great stories and storytellers and turning them into bestselling authors and screenwriters--and making films which send their stories around the world.

His books include, most recently, novels THE MESSIAH MATRIX and SEVEN WAYS TO DIE (with William Diehl) and nonfiction books for writers at every stage of their career. Based on his teaching, managing, and writing experience, he's successfully built bestselling careers for novelists, nonfiction writers, and screenwriters from the ground up.

Atchity has also produced 30 films, including "Hysteria" (Maggie Gyllenhaal and Hugh Dancy), "The Expatriate" (Aaron Eckhart), "The Lost Valentine" (Betty White), "Gospel Hill" (Danny Glover), "Joe Somebody" (Tim Allen), "Life or Something Like It" (Angelina Jolie), "The Amityville Horror: The Evil Escapes," "Shadow of Obsession" (Veronica Hammel), "The Madam's Family" (Ellen Burstyn). Full film bio at http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0040338/

He was born in Eunice, Louisiana; and raised in Kansas City, Missouri, where he attended Rockhurst High School (and was editor in chief of The Prep News). After undergraduate work at Georgetown (A.B., English/Classics), and getting his Ph.D. in comparative literature from Yale, he served as professor and chairman of comparative literature and creative writing at Occidental College and Fulbright Professor at the University of Bologna. He was Distinguished Instructor, UCLA Writers Program, and a regular columnist-reviewer for The Los Angeles Times Book Review.

As CEO of www.storymerchant.com, his Story Merchant companies, www.aeionline.com and www.thewriterslifeline.com, provide a one-stop full-service development and management center for commercial and literary writers who wish to launch their storytelling in all media--from publishing and film and television production, to Web presence and merchandising & licensing.


Newtopia Magazine Interview

Mongrel Patriot Review: Producer and Writer Kenneth Atchity by Tamara Spivey

A dreamer who realizes his dreams and helps others do the same, Ken Atchity has impressive credits in the worlds of film, television and publishing.

Read more: http://newtopiamagazine.wordpress.com/2012/11/15/mongrel-patriot-review-producer-and-writer-kenneth-atchity/

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I want to thank Kenneth Atchity, a creative genius for sharing his brilliant mind and writing an inspirational masterpiece that made me realize it is normal to be crazy enough to pursue my dreams for as long as I have been pursuing them and even though I sometimes feel that I have gotten nowhere, it is safe to believe that someday I will reach that place that I need to be and the true success is that I keep going until I get there, because no other place will do.
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Format: Paperback
I always find self-help books to be the most useful when the author has accomplished something more difficult than what I am seeking to do. The lessons from a more challenging transition always seem to make it more obvious to me what I should do.

Top film producer, author and agent, Dr. Kenneth Atchity, has been there and done that. He turned his back on lifetime tenure as a respected professor at Occidental College in Los Angeles to become a creative force and deal-maker in both Hollywood and New York. Why? He wanted to live his dreams . . . rather than be merely secure.

As I often say to friends, I'd rather be exhausted than bored. Dr. Atchity seems to operate on the same wavelength.

The book has a much more sophisticated view of the psychology of personal change than I have read in more self-help books. Dr. Atchity is either extremely self-aware . . . or he has spent a lot of time on somebody's couch.

I found the concepts in his book to be very interesting and helpful. He describes how our minds normally oscillate between the visionary who creates our dreams (who sets no limits) and the accountant (who wants meat and potatoes on the table today). This oscillation can be destructive of both our dreams and our security. In the book, he describes an alternative, a Type C, who reconciles dreams and security in ways that make both more realizable.

I especially liked his discussions of the realities behind the things people fear most: losing their homes; not being able to pay their bills; and filing for bankruptcy. As he points out, it's not great . . . but it's not the end of the world.

Anyone who becomes self-employed will see many ups and downs in their income and prospects.
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Format: Paperback
I've reviewed many How-To, motivational and inspirational books and I've noticed patterns and examples that generate warm and fuzzy feelings but are more philosophical than offer practical applications. I only learned about Ken Atchity because he was a keynote speaker at a conference I was attending. Listening to him speak, I knew this book would be a new slant and flavor to check out and I was very impressed as I read it.

The examples of the Accountant, Visionary and Creative personality types are great. Ken adds charts to achieve your dream with an agenda, time scheduling and word transformations. He uses his experience operating as both the accountant and a visionary to truly show the creative objectives. Then he adds a little yoga, seaweed greens, exercise and fun advice about balancing personal, professional and inspirational aspects of living life to the full, every moment.

I'm recommending this books to many. This book is more practical and motivating than many books I've read.
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Format: Paperback
If you feel like it's time to give up on your dream and become a responsible adult--read this first! Ken Atchity offers wit and wisdom for those of us who are Type C (creative) personalities and can't figure out how to balance doing what we love with what we think we should be doing.

I laughed out loud at Atchity's Mark Twain-like humor in analyzing the creative entrepreneur's thought process and said "been there, done that" a dozen times. He explains how to reconcile the two competing mind forces: the Visionary and the Accountant. You can feed the Visionary by endulging in your creative passion, but will starve the Accountant from lack of funding and security. Likewise, if you feed the Accountant by doing what is fiscally safe, there will be no time or energy to feed the Visionary, and depression is inevitable. So what's a Type C to do?

Read the book. It's a dream saver!
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Format: Paperback
I read a lot and most self-help books are all the same. Not this one. Atchity has created a fantastic book. He doesn't sugar-coat the process you have to go through to pursue your dream, instead he provides answers on how to work through the hard times. He also delivers page after page of inspiration. This is overall one of the most valuable books on doing what you love, on making life an adventure, on following what others might view as an impossible dream. I continue to reread sections and find more helpful instruction.
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